2. Find out what your current circuit in the kitchen can handle. In order to do this, multiply the amps by the volts. Most circuits have 120 volts. So if your circuit was 15 amps, you’d multiply 15×120. That amounts to 1800 – the total number of watts your kitchen circuit can handle. It’s a good rule of thumb to use your circuit up to 80 percent of its capacity.
3. Consider the condition of your current wiring. If you’re in an older home, you might consider rewiring the room (this is where you should contact an electrician if you don’t have experience).
4. Now comes the fun part: decide what you want to change. Think about areas you would like to add more light to and brainstorm design styles that you love.
5. Start with the overhead light fixtures. Most people have at least some recessed fixtures for kitchens. They distribute the lighting nicely, and they’re a great first “layer” of light to establish. You can also consider pendant lights for general overhead lighting. Even though the light source is more focused, several pendant lights that are grouped together can add a stylish touch to the room. They’re also often less expensive than chandeliers.
6. Move onto task lighting. Under cabinet lights are essential and are available in xenon, halogen, fluorescent, and LED. If you’re looking for a dimmable light, make sure to go with xenon or halogen – the other sources don’t have that functionality. Areas over the sink and island also call for extra task lighting. Pendants are helpful in those spaces as well.
7. Accent lighting is your next step. Over cabinet lighting can create a pleasant aesthetic effect. Wall sconces are usually unexpected in the kitchen, but they add an interesting element of design. Even bringing a small lamp into the corner of the kitchen can help. The key is to create several different layers of light.
8. Assess your newly-lit kitchen and decide if the lighting is adequate. Don’t forget to share the pictures of your end results on our Customer Lighting Projects page!